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Small grouping from 30th division veteran (Normandy though the Bulge)

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Picked up this small set though an online auction. I was bidding on a few other things, and saw this come up and decided it was pretty interesting overall. These items belonged to Ernest Frank Cody Jr, who served in the 30th Infantry Division, 30th Signal Corps. Just a few European coins in rough condition, paper money from around Europe, a small German pouch, a lighter, two photographs, and a graduation certificate from 1940 for the Communications school of the 30th Infantry Division. One of the paper notes has many GI signatures written on it, including the friend mentioned in the letter below.

There was also a hand written write up on the vet, though the paper doesn't identify who wrote it and has a few errors, but those are also present in his obituary too (Mainly a reference to the 50th signal corp, not the 30th which he served in). The guidon flag mentioned wasn't included in the set. Possible kept by a family member or lost? Who's to say. Here is what the written note said:

Elbert Frank Cody Jr was born June 19, 1921 in Spartanburg, S.C. and later moved to Canton, N.C. with his family. The mountains came to be a major source of delight for Frank. He had nine siblings. Two brothers and seven sisters. He loved to call “Dog”, he said that was the only name he needed, and with his rifle, frying pan, and if he could snitch it, a little fat back, he would walk up the holler and become at one with the Blue Ridge Mountains he loved so well. He could always fill his pockets with apples or chestnuts and would shoot a rabbit that he would share with “Dog”.

He heard about the war and the patriotic talk on the streets of Canton. He like many others became afraid that the war might change the freedoms he loved. He knew for certain that America must win. Gradually his patriotic thoughts grew to the point that he knew he had to do his part. The Canton National Guard, 30th Signal Company was recruiting and was rumored to soon become activated. Frank, Walter Robinson, and Gomer Scott all enlisted with the Army National Guard. Gomer did not survive Normandy. Sadly Frank witnessed his death by machine gun fire. Gomer was by his side.

After training in the Communications school in Fort Jackson, S.C. the 30th Division became part of a task force including the 1st Marine Brigade stationed for training in Reykjavik, Iceland. The 30th Signal Battalion was part of a large advance party of Americans soldiers stationed in Iceland. The remaining soldiers of the 30th embarked aboard the USS Harry Lee that sailed from the Army Base, South Brooklyn New York.

It was during this activity preparing to embark that Frank met Robert Sabo from Connecticut and later the owner of Sabo’s Pizza in Keystone Heights. They became very closer friends and shared in many adventures, close calls, and incidents involving the M.P.’s. Frank and Bob didn’t know if they would survive the day and see tomorrow. It was because of this enduring friendship that Robert Sabo moved to Florida after retiring from the telephone company.

The souvenirs/memo collected and offered here came from homes, buildings, schools, and trenches they took from the German forces occupying them. The guidon flag was taken from a partially burned school after the occupying Germans were driven away by Frank’s company. Some of the burned coins and currency was also found in the school house. The remaining currency and coins were left by fleeing Germans as the battalion advanced.

Frank, Walter, and Sabo survived until the war ended. Near the end of the war a G.I. was trapped underneath an Army Jeep that fell on him during an enemy shelling. Franks was injured when he single handedly picked up the front of the jeep so the soldier could crawl out. His back was injured in the incident. He was treated at the Veterans Hospital in Lake City and Atlanta. He refused the purple heart and pension he was entitled to.

Elbert Frank Cody like many others was a North Carolinian farm boy who became an unheralded hero as he became a man fighting to keep America free. Frank died in Palatka Florida in April of 2006.



Overall a pretty interesting set, even if the history can't be verified. The coins certainly have a look of being through a fire or burnt. The obituary of the GI mentions that he was at the landings on Utah beach. Here's a link. I'll do a bit more research to confirm these things. I've read the 30th Division didn't land in Europe until June 11th, so possibly that's wrong?



















According to what's written on the back of this photo, the vet himself is in the back row, second from the left.





This photo has the vet's friend Robert Sabo, who is directly in the center of the first row of GI's.








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